Lyuda's Reviews > Miss Buncle's Book

Miss Buncle's Book by D.E. Stevenson
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really liked it
bookshelves: 1900-1930-england

Miss Barbara Buncle, unassuming frumpy-clothed spinster in her mid-to-late thirties, is in a bind- she needs money to support herself and her elderly nanny/turned motherly maid. There are just few respectable ways for an unmarried woman living in a small English village of Silverstream in the 1930s to earn income.

Keeping hens? No, she didn’t like even touching them; they are such fluttery things, aren’t they?

Paying guests? But there is already an establishment in Silverstream.

Writing a book? She doesn’t think her books can be exciting -life in Silverstream is rather dull and I can only write about what I know. At least I can only write about people that I know. I can make them do things, of course.

And, so, she wrote a book under the pseudonym “John Smith”, changed the village and villagers' names and sent the book to the publisher. To her utter astonishment, the book became almost an overnight success and would have far-reaching and unexpected effects on the lives of people of Silverstream, including her own. Never the famous saying “Life imitates art” rang truer.

This is a delightfully clever read that combines old-fashioned charm with perceptiveness, comfort and dry humor. Numerous cast of characters provides plenty of opportunities to explore the pitfalls of pride and the foibles of human nature in a kind of tongue-in-cheek way. Keeping everyone straight is a bit confusing at first but not for long. The characters leap to life, distinguishing themselves in one way or another, and slowly but surely move along this multilayered story.

Pour yourself a cup of tea, make yourself comfortable and enjoy the book!

First published in 1934, the book was recently republished in e-format by the Estate of D. E. Stevenson. Dorothy Emily Stevenson (1892-1973) was a popular Scottish author of more than 40 novels. Her father was first cousin of Robert Louis Stevenson.

And about the book cover. I’m glad the newly published editions changed the cover from what it was in 1982 hardcover edition. The main character depicted on that edition looks like a woman in her late-sixties and not our much younger heroine.
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Reading Progress

August 29, 2016 – Started Reading
August 29, 2016 – Shelved
August 29, 2016 – Shelved as: to-read
August 30, 2016 –
49.0% "What fools the public were! They were exactly like sheep…thought Mr. Abbott sleepily…following each other’s lead, neglecting one book and buying another just because other people were buying it, although, for the life of you, you couldn’t see what the one lacked and the other possessed."
August 31, 2016 – Finished Reading
October 17, 2017 – Shelved as: 1900-1930-england

Comments Showing 1-14 of 14 (14 new)

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Georgie-who-is-Sarah One of my favourites - do hope you enjoy it!


Lyuda Georgie wrote: "One of my favourites - do hope you enjoy it!"
I'm about halfway and enjoying it. Very charming, witty, funny and kind of comforting...


message 3: by Jane (new) - added it

Jane What a lovely review, Lyuda! I've had this book sitting on the table next to my reading chair for the past three years and somehow I always pass over it and read something else. I suppose I don't even see the book anymore -- it's become like part of the decor!! After reading your review, I'm thinking that perhaps it's time to start reading my decorations!!


Lyuda Jane wrote: "What a lovely review, Lyuda! I've had this book sitting on the table next to my reading chair for the past three years and somehow I always pass over it and read something else. I suppose I don't e..."
Thank you, Jane. Oh, dear, I love your sense of humor! Yes, please, start reading your decorations (still giggling:)). And I hope you enjoy the story as much as I did.


Christina ~ Brunette Reader Glad you found a vintage read to enjoy, Lyuda! Will you go on with the series?
Lovely review! :)


Lyuda Christina ~ Brunette Reader wrote: "Glad you found a vintage read to enjoy, Lyuda! Will you go on with the series?
Lovely review! :)"

Thank you, Christina. I'm not sure if I continue with the series. I read some reviews that said the first one is the best. So, I may just stop here and savor the good memory :)


Christina ~ Brunette Reader Lyuda wrote: "Christina ~ Brunette Reader wrote: "Glad you found a vintage read to enjoy, Lyuda! Will you go on with the series?
Lovely review! :)"
Thank you, Christina. I'm not sure if I continue with the serie..."


In that case, wise choice ;)


Lyuda :))


message 9: by Kristi (new) - added it

Kristi Nice review.


Lyuda Kristi wrote: "Nice review."
Thank you, Kristi. :)


message 11: by Luli (new) - added it

Luli Lovely review, Lyuda!
Is this story as funny as it seems?? I´m going to try it, sounds too amusing to overlook it!
Glad you enjoyed it so much.
:)


Lyuda Luli wrote: "Lovely review, Lyuda!
Is this story as funny as it seems?? I´m going to try it, sounds too amusing to overlook it!
Glad you enjoyed it so much.
:)"

Thank you, Luli. It's funny in the old-fashioned tongue-in-cheek way.
Btw, I'm reading a western atm Nobody's Darling. I know you like the genre..Have you read it? I just started and so far enjoying it tremendously.


message 13: by Linda (new) - added it

Linda Sorry I missed reading this book with you, Lyuda. It sounded like it was lots of fun. Awesome review! :D


Lyuda Linda wrote: "Sorry I missed reading this book with you, Lyuda. It sounded like it was lots of fun. Awesome review! :D"
Thank you, Linda! I wish we read it together as well. I have a feeling you would enjoy this one as much as I did. Hopefully, your library would carry this book soon. :)


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